Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Hello Ry Mamako!
It’s your silly son Austin here again, out here on my big adventure.
No, but seriously, how are you doing? I’ve got some pretty big news today. Remember how I said that transfers were coming up? Well, my time here in Mahajanga has officially come to an end. I am pretty sad to be leaving this place. It’s crazy how you can just live somewhere for almost six months, and then once the time comes to leave, it feels like it all went by in two seconds. I guess it all has to end sometime though.I’ll be getting on a taxi and leaving here tomorrow morning to go back to Antananarivo. That’s where I’ll be getting transferred. My new area is called Betongolo, and it’s actually a ward! I’ve never worked in ward before. I am pretty stoked about that. I have heard a lot about the ward already and I am stoked to be getting down there. I’ll be a serving there and I will also be serving as an office missionary. Me and my new companion run errands for the office, I guess. I honestly don’t understand much about it yet, but we will see. We are actually one of the only three companionships on the island (as far as I am aware) that has a car. I have also heard that my companion doesn’t have a permit, so we’ll see how that goes. I think I’ll be learning how to drive stick. Sweet. I’ll tell you more about my companion next week, for I have only really met him once. His name is Elder Mocellin and he’s from France. Like I said though, I will tell you more about him next week after I have worked with him for a good couple of days. Maybe I’ll send you a picture of us if your lucky.
That’s the news about the transfer though. I am going back to the big city for my fourth area.
I will miss Mahajanga a lot though. This place is so cool. Well, perhaps the hottest thing in the world, but figuratively cool. Soaring eagles and breathtaking baobab girth cool enough to cool down the heat just enough to smile. Will I miss sweating every hour of every day? Will I miss that funky smell I have picked up from that sweat? Perhaps not, but will I miss all the crazy dialects and saying ‘talilio rika!’ to the posiposy drivers? Certainly I will.
“kara kory ma laolo e?” “tsisy kabary ma”
It’s all good though. There are a few baptisms coming up that I am a little bummed I won’t see, but it’s all good. That’s just the way it goes.
That was honestly the biggest news though. I’ll be getting transferred. I feel like now that I have got that across.. there’s not too much to add now.
I talked to some American guys at a restaurant on Saturday. THAT was interesting. I haven’t spoken English face to face with someone like that since I was with Fox. Two months isn’t really that long of a time I suppose, but it sure was different. They were cool though. They were studying to be doctors here and were visiting a hospital here I guess. They are from Texas. One of the guys actually knew a good bit about missionaries and about the church.  I mean, he knew we were out two years and he even told me that I don’t have much longer left. Would you look at that? Haha, but yeah, they were cool though. I could definitely see how much different I am now. I can talk to strangers much more easily. Of course I have seen that when I speak Malagasy, but doing it in English is a whole different way to play the ballgame.
We will be going to a nice beach today though, which I am pretty stoked about. I’ll be sure to send you pictures next week. It’s called ‘Grand Poivre,’ and although I don’t know anything about it, I have heard that it’s pretty nice.
I’ll be leaving with an elder from my mtc group again, Elder Ewell. I am pretty stoked on that. We got along well back then. He really helped me at the beginning of it all. We are both into skateboarding and stuff of the like, and that really helped me in the beginning, haha.
One thing I have been pretty powered up on lately is working out. My companion and I have been going to a gym every morning for about two weeks. It’s way close to our house, and it’s way raddd. I’m a little bummed I won’t be about to take full advantage of my one month membership.. but that’s just the way it goes. Pumping the iron is nice though. I hope I can get something similar going in my new area so I don’t just get double flabby all over. I still have a pretty big rice belly I need to be working on.
So this next week is going to bring a lot of changes to my mission pattern as it has been of late. I’ll be living with more missionaries than I have seen in months. I’ll let you know how that goes.
Okay, so I actually just barely got to log in to the email (I wrote this in Word) and look at Brittany’s email, and wow! I wasn’t expecting that at all! I mean, of course I knew she was going to be giving birth soon, but now it’s already all done! Haha that’s crazy! He looks like a way radical party dude for sure! Just know that I’ll be keeping him in my prayers though. We’ll get him home in no time. A little slow breathing won’t stop Liam, he’s too much of a man!
I feel like this letter is really long though, so I think I’ll give it a break here.
The newest uncle on the block,
Elder ‘Office Elder’ Bergera

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